Benefits of MicroPenning

Faster Development Time

StopwatchTime-to-Market (TTM) is the most important factor in product development. TTM is a differentiator among companies and provides competitive advantage. Companies that have faster TTM are able to grow market share, realize revenues faster and have lower development costs. They are able to maximize product profits from the total product life cycle curve.

At Micropen Medical, we recognize that TTM is part of the business strategy, not the blind pursuit of speed. TTM refers more to efficiencies throughout the development process, efficiencies that impact the total development cycle.

At Micropen Medical, we focus more on end dates than start dates. We don’t measure activity, we measure results. We recognize that development benchmarks all have “Go/No Go” implications. Once we know a customer’s targeted market entry date, we adopt it as a mutual goal. Our product engineers and material scientists are measured by the TTM objective.

At Micropen Medical, we bring our own competitive advantage to the table in product development. It is our Micropenning® process. Our Instant Expertise in inks, substrates and interconnect schemes allows a prospective customer to make a technology decision early. Our ability to make instant changes in pattern, pattern dimensions and ink rheology without disruption is invaluable. Our rapid response to test data and clinical trial findings keeps the project going forward. Our knowledge of, and management of, a reliable supply chain brings immediate qualification and validation value to the customer

At Micropen Medical, we recognize that platform based approaches to product development is where the real TTM advantage and cost savings lie. When a customer uses a Micropenning® process to develop and introduce a product to market, whether it be a tube based device, an electrosurgical device or a catheter balloon, successive products are developed even faster with more development cost savings.

Improved Clinical Outcomes

The attribute that unites all medical device manufacturers is improved clinical outcomes. Better prevention, improved diagnosis and more effective treatment become the design references for a new device. As a partner to medical device manufacturers, Micropen Medical’s connection to improved clinical outcomes is through three design and development features: PRECISION, SAFETY and RELIABILITY.

Physician Talking to Patient

Precision

With the aid of medical devices, the trend in surgery is for faster and less invasive procedures that result in less trauma, fewer complications and shorter recovery times. Device precision is paramount in achieving these desired results. What is device precision? It could be the precise navigation of the device in the vascular highway by the surgeon and the precise location of the device for the procedure. It could be the accurate measurement and reporting of metrics by temperature or pressure sensors integrated with devices. It could be the precise transmittal of RF energy to a precise location in a cardiac ablation procedure. It could be the precise monitoring of nerves in an ENT or spinal procedure. It could be the precise delivery of pharmaceuticals on stents, needles or pumps. In fact, PRECISION is required in all of these procedures and the design of devices must insure the precision.

At Micropen Medical, precision is our foremost design principle. Micropenning® enables the precise application of fine, conformal traces of functional materials directly onto medical devices and 3D geometries such as endotracheal tubes, catheter balloons and tubular ceramic. Our ability to print a radiopaque marker or ring on an odd topology surface enhances the visualization of medical devices and precise placement of the device in surgery. Precise patterning also allows greater functionality and reduced device size.

Safety and Reliability

With a decade of research and development augmented by field testing, we have learned how to combine design and materials to provide both safety and performance. As our expertise relates to the marriage of functional materials to surfaces, our link to device safety is through the selection of materials and adhesion of materials to the substrate.
Biocompatibility is an important element in the selection of a functional material. Most metal materials are toxic if they build up in the bloodstream in significant amounts. Use of these materials in temporary invasive medical devices poses little risk of toxic biological effects. At Micropen Medical, we conduct biocompatibility testing on selected materials or reference prior biocompatibility test results.

Adhesion of the functional material to the substrate is a critical parameter for safety and performance. Consideration of adhesion begins with ink selection. Our compiled product development experiences provide us with a contemporary database of adhesion results among a variety of inks and substrates. In some cases, an adhesion promoting layer, or undercoat, is employed beneath the ink layer. In other cases, surface modification of the substrate material is employed to address adhesion problems.

Lower Production Costs

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The use of Micropenning® technology as a device design option generally results in lower product cost. Because our core technology involves the printing of fine, conformal traces of functional materials directly onto medical devices, oftentimes, we are replacing wires with ink, reducing the form factor of the substrate, eliminating manual or mechanical manufacturing steps, all of which reduce cost. At the same time, the result is a more elegant and reliable device.

Micropenning® is an additive, not subtractive, printing process. This is important in the use of precious metals such as silver, gold and platinum. Micropenning® lends itself to automation when unit volumes require it or when product cost demands it.